Niacin deficiency


In the Brooder
Apr 7, 2021
Need some quick help here. One of my 4 week old ducklings started showing signs of a niacin deficiency. She is eating the same thing as my 5 other ducklings and they are all fine. I noticed that her legs are shaky upon standing and she will often sit more than stand. Her legs also look to be just barely pigeon toed.
They all have access to clean drinking water and fresh food. Food is duckling and gosling starter and grower (I will have to check bag for specific brand), water is changed 6-8x a day minimum and they have access to a kiddie pool. Dried crickets and mealworms are used as treats (each duck gets 2 crickets/day as rewards for behavior and maybe 10-15 mealworms). They have also had some peas and blueberries at various points but it is not a regular part of their diet.
As it is 4am once again, no stores are open right now. I pulled the duckling out and fed her some extra mealworms as they are supposedly high in niacin. I will be trying to get some niacin supplements tomorrow, if I cannot find any then I will order it and continue with extra mealworms.
Is there anything else I should do/be aware of? I have yet to find a good vet for ducks in my area, but with a quick google search there does look to be at least 2. I would prefer to avoid the vet if possible but will go if it may be needed.
Any help would be very much appreciated.

Callender Girl

Crossing the Road
Sep 18, 2018
North Central Iowa
I am no expert, first off, and I have never had a duckling show niacin deficiency signs. When I couldn't get supplemental niacin, I fed massive amounts of frozen peas to my ducklings.

It's probably just a stop-gap measure until someone with a better idea answers your post. But, I know when I'm desperate to help one of my babies, I just want to do something NOW that might make them feel better.

Best of luck with your baby!


Jun 6, 2019
Definitely get the liquid vitamin B complex ASAP. It can be given orally. Some ducks just need more, and I experienced that with one of my pekin ducklings. They were getting fermented grains, so I added it to water and food - they can't overdose and it's fine for the other ducklings. Otherwise you can offer it over treats or use a syringe, but then you have to be careful about aspiration. The vitamin B complex works miracles - so I hope you can find it. If your feed store doesn't carry it try Amazon prime.

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